Grants still available to breathe new life into redundant buildings
Businesses across the Marches and Worcestershire urged to take advantage of £1million Small businesses and start-ups across the Marches and Worcestershire are being encouraged to apply for a share of a…
Businesses across the Marches and Worcestershire urged to take advantage of £1million Small businesses and start-ups across the Marches and Worcestershire are being encouraged to apply for a share of a £1million fund that breathes new life in to redundant buildings across the region.
Since its launch in 2012, the Marches Redundant Building Grant Scheme (RBG), which was extended to include Worcestershire in 2013, has awarded grants in excess of £1.5m. These grants have supported forty seven separate projects from which over 300 jobs have, or will be, created with a further 45 jobs being safeguarded. All projects funded by the current scheme need to be completed by June of next year and so applicants are being urged to enquire now in order to meet that timeframe.
The grant scheme was established to give small businesses and start-ups across the region the opportunity to bid for grants that would bring unused buildings back into productive economic use and to date projects have included the conversion of a pig barn to office use; a former solicitors’ office being converted in to a day care nursery; and the transformation of a former hardware store in to a bustling and lively coffee shop and art gallery.
Caroline Cattle, Grants Manager, comments: “The difference that the Redundant Buildings Grant has already made to so many small businesses across the Marches and Worcestershire region cannot be underestimated. Businesses have been enabled to grow and diversify and take advantage of markets that they wouldn’t have been able to enter without the ability themselves to physically grow.
“All projects receiving grants from the scheme need to be completed by June of next year and so with funds still available we are keen that applicants come forward as soon as possible in order to complete the application process and all renovation works before that deadline. Many small businesses have already benefited from the scheme and put the funds to really good use – it would be great to see more do likewise, but I’d urge them to act quickly.”
Chairman of the Marches LEP, Graham Wynn adds: “The Redundant Buildings Grant is a scheme that has proved phenomenally successful and one against which it is clear to see the difference it has made not only to the recipients, but also to those around them – additional childcare places have been provided; capacity has been expanded having a knock on effect to suppliers; and importantly jobs have been created and safeguarded. Of course, in addition to this buildings which had become neglected and unattractive have been given a new lease of life benefitting everyone around them.”
Capital grant support of between £3,000 and up to £100,000 is available to small businesses and start-ups to transform redundant buildings into a base for their enterprises. This upper limit was recently increased from £50,000 in recognition of the complexities and scale of some of the applications received.
Businesses interested in finding out more about the scheme or wanting to speak to the RBG team about their project can contact 01432 260662 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Breakdown of projects awarded funds to date are as follows:
11 projects supported
£379,785.97 in grant awarded
79 jobs to be created
Telford & Wrekin
10 projects supported
£271,058.50 in grant awarded
81 jobs to be created and 13.2 safeguarded
22 projects supported
£662,536.73 in grant awarded
120.2 jobs to be created and 18.3 safeguarded
4 projects supported
£193,167 in grant awarded
30.3 jobs created and 13.06 safeguarded